Chapter 3. Requirements

Total quality management (TQM) proponent Crosby defined quality as "conformance to requirement." At the time it was coined, Crosby's definition applied primarily to statistical process control and manufacturing processes, but his definition is also applicable to software projects whereby software requirements are mapped to test cases and ultimately to the designed software solution to be deployed into the production environment.

Our definition of quality is "a system that performs as expected, making available the required system features in a consistent fashion, demonstrating high availability under any type of constraint (i.e., stress, concurrency, security breach, etc.); thus, consistently meeting the user's expectations and satisfying the system's user needs can be considered to be high quality."

Whose responsibility is it to build high-quality systems? All stakeholders that take part in the software development process are responsible for the system quality and need to have tasks assigned accordingly to be able to contribute to the quality of a system.

How is this type of quality achieved? Simply put, by documenting the system's user requirements and needs. However, achieving this type of quality is more complicated than that. For example, many SAP projects do not have a stringent and effective methodology for drafting, capturing, managing, and verifying requirements, nor the schedules and budgets to implement this effectively. It can also be counterproductive ...

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